so we haven’t seen jason since his…interesting…crossover with the main man of elm street in 2003’s freddy vs. jason. now, thanks in part to michael ‘blow ‘em up’ bay, crystal lakes famous killer is back. and despite bay being on board, nothing blows up.
marcus nispel is at the helm of this revamp/remake amalgamation of the famous horror series and is an interesting choice with a rollercoaster record. albeit a small roller coaster but it does the up-and-down dip. nispel was the man behind the remake of the texas chainsaw massacre remake in 2003 and the abysmal bree-filled pathfinder in ’07. with chainsaw behind him, faith in the movie was there. and the faith was retained.
now it’s important to remember when watching this movie and thinking about how you liked it, you have to go into it with a certain mindset. not only is it a horror movie but it’s a remake of a beloved series and IT’S A HORROR MOVIE. don’t go into this expecting an Oscar winner.
with that said…ahem. damian shannon and mark swift penned the story and script, continuing on with jason, as they were also the minds behind freddy vs. jason. the new take on the classic is refreshing, breathing life into a franchise that was beating itself to death much like jason does to his victims.
it begins with a montage of the death of jasons mother which allows the audience to skip the most boring part of the friday the 13th legend. we jump into the 1980’s, the GOLDEN AGE of horror, a group of teenagers [surprise!] who are camping out near the horrific camp crystal lake. jason starts the killing spree with a bang, mixing up the deaths: a stabbing, a brutal beating, a bear trap, and [my personal favorite] trapping a half naked girl in a sleeping bag and stringing her above a fire. jason keeps one of the girls in his cave due to her likeness of his mother and that leads into our plot.
jared padalecki [supernatural] and danielle panabaker [sky high] spearhead the cast with what’s expected from a horror cast: lot’s of running and screaming, followed by gasping breaths, and a cliche and brief romance. aaron yoo [21, disturbia] and travis van winkle [meet the spartans, accepted] join the cast as prominent and stand out characters, yoo once again retaining the role of funniest guy on set and van winkle reestablishing himself as a cinematic douchebag expert. derek mears does his first stint as the mutated killer and at a staggering 6′ 5” he towers over his victims and the expectations. his jason is a mixture of the classic portrayal of the killer and a new, more engaged character. also, he RUNS. jason fucking runs. it’s a nice new touch…a fucking brilliant touch.
the movie is exciting and full of vintage horror flick standards: murder, sex, boobs, and lots of blood. it does well at incorporating new deaths in a way that isn’t corny or stale. if you’re expecting a down-and-out remake of part II [and partially part III], you’ll end up dissapointed. however, this is far better than the originals. nispel hits another home run with his remake/revamp cycle. i can only hope that he continues the trend.
bottom line: a retelling of a famous franchise that achieves it’s goal. a downright likable chiller, especially for fans of the days of yore.
what it’s comparable to: friday the 13th [parts I-III], 80’s horror movies, discovering faith in some remakes